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February 19, 2015

5 Fun Read Across America Day Ideas

Written By: Brandi Jordan
X Read Across America Day Ideas

Read Across America Day Ideas

Read Across America Day (also known as Dr. Seuss’ Birthday!) is March 2nd.  If you are trying to figure out some quick, last minute lesson ideas, take a look at the ones below.  Not only are they fun, but they can open students’ eyes to a world outside of the classroom.


Read Across America Day Ideas for Kids

1.  So Skype!

Why share Read Across America Day with just your own students when you could read to the world?  Contact your teaching friends in other parts of the country, or world, and set up a Skype chat between your classroom and theirs.  Students from each class can take turns reading their favorite Dr. Seuss books or sharing stories that they are working on in class.


2.  Grandparents Galore

Invite grandparents to come and spend some time in your classroom on Read Across America Day.  They can share their favorite books with your students and listen as their grandchild reads aloud to them.  For students without grandparents close by, pair them with those that come to visit the class.  Let the grandparents know ahead of time that they will be having special time with a few children and not just their own grandchild.  You could also invite parents, aunts, and uncles.


3.  Community Volunteers

You will be surprised how many community helpers and volunteers are willing to come read to your students.  It is a great way to involve the community and make children more aware of those in their neighborhood.  Your school’s Safety Resource Officer, a local firefighter, and a nurse or doctor from the local hospital would all be excellent choices for guest readers.


4.  Book Drive

Instead of focusing on what reading can do for them, have students focus on what reading can do for others.  Hold a book or magazine drive to collect donations for local shelters, hospitals, and other community agencies that would benefit from children’s book donations.  For reading practice, allow students to read the book they are donating before placing it in the collection bin.


5.  Awesome Authors

You may not be able to bring your favorite children’s book author into the classroom, but chances are that you can find him or her reading one of your favorite books on YouTube.  Find and preview a few videos of your students’ favorite authors reading their books and watch them in class.  You could also videotape your students reading their favorite books and post them to your password protected classroom website or blog.



What are some of your favorite activities for Read Across America Day?  Do you have a set of lessons that you enjoy using every year?  Share your ideas below!

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  • Slooney
    March 2, 2015

    For years, our school has celebrated Book Week in March, although not on Read Across America Day. We have a dress-up day, where students come to school dressed as a favorite book character. We have a reading-themed poster contest, and a book exchange. For the book exchange, students bring in old books they have “outgrown” and get to take home the same number of books, brought in by other students. We also have reading buddies, where older and younger students read together, and a school-wide Read In. A librarian comes from the local public library for a story time, and we take walking field trips to the library. Some classes have Guest Readers come in, which can include parents, grandparents, and school and community volunteers. Some smaller activities we do in individual classes, like making bookmarks, writing book reports, watching a movie based on a book they have read together, comparing books/movies, and many other activities. The week culminates in an assembly, where the kindergarteners sing a fun song, “Fact or Fiction,” and other classes perform readers’ theaters, read poems and stories they have written, etc. The students always look forward to this fun week, where the emphasis is “Reading is Fun!”

  • Brenda
    February 27, 2011

    We have a community that doesn’t do well reading aloud to children as a whole group, mainly the parents of second language learners. Our Kindergarten classes rotate to each of the other Kindergarten classes for a Dr. Seuss story and an activity to go with it. The parents assist by escorting the students from room to room and helping the teachers pass out materials or helping children who need additional instruction. (Many times their own child)It is a fun day for all!

  • Crystal F.
    February 20, 2011

    This is my first year teaching. I am looking for some great ideas for read across America day and this looks like a good start. I will be looking for the author reading one of their books on youtube because my students really like Andrew Clements.

  • Nancy Domoff
    February 20, 2011

    What a great idea! I am volunteering in a 2nd grade classroom, helping out with an ELL student. I am going to try and set a webcam up with my lap top. My daughter has my lap top that comes with the webcam already attached. Thank you for the wonderful way to use Skype! I might try to play a hangman game with him. The internet has some great sites for ELL students. I could set the game up the day before, then see if he could skype me the answers. Thank you again for sharing!

  • Nichole D
    February 18, 2011

    I so wish we could Skype in my classroom!! That sounds like a wonderful way to get my ELL kiddos excited about reading!! If I could get a computer that had a webcam – I could SO see my students practicing their reading so that they could read to someone else in front of a camera! That sounds like such a good idea!! 😀

    But what I may try is to look up authors online and see if I can find videos of any of our favorite authors reading their books. What a wonderful idea! 🙂

  • Lisa
    February 18, 2011

    I have my students bring their favorite stuffed animal. They share a story about their animal with the class. They read to their favorite animal in any location they want in the classroom. We are not allowed to bring in community unless they share with the entire school. Love these ideas in the article.

  • Ellen
    February 18, 2011

    We love to dress up and have lot of fun favors for the kids.

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